Orchids - Knowledgebase Question

Bettendorf, Io
Question by phillipsronl
August 19, 2007
I know I've probably asked too many questions but I have one more. I'm new to orchids. One stem of my orchid plant has turned brown the other is green. Have I killed one stem and do I need to prune it? The orchid is a Phalaenopsis. When is the orchid's bloom time--I've got conflicting times?


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Answer from NGA
August 19, 2007

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We're always happy to answer questions so feel free to stop by anytime. I would cut the brown stem down - brown indicates dead - but leave the green stem alone. Phalaenopsis, or Moth Orchid, develops long flower sprays. If you cut a faded spray back to a node, a secondary spray may form. If you cut the stem down to the crown of the plant, no new flowers will form on that stem. I just leave part of an old stem on my plants so another set of flowers can develop from a dormant bud.

As for flowering, Phalaenopsis can produce a flowering stalk at most any time - initiation has to do with temperature changes and maturity of the plant. Although spikes can appear at any time of the year, most of mine come into spike during the winter months and flower around November, December and January. It takes about three months for the spike to grow and develop into flowers.

Best wishes with your orchid!

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